In a bid to concluded the 2020 season, the Major League Soccer (MLS) adopted a one-off tournament-style competition. The tournament which kicked off in July has seen teams drawn into groups and games have been played started since the 9th of July.
The MLS Is Back tournament is now almost done with the group-stage games. As things stand, as many as six teams have secured their qualification for the knockout stages.
In three group-stage games of the MLS tournament, Orlando City and Philadelphia Union qualified out of Group A without tasting defeat. San Jose Earthquakes, conceding three goals, were the only unbeaten side in Group B, after three games.
The Earthquakes will be joined in the knockout by Seattle Sounders from Group B, and both Toronto FC and New England Revolution from Group C.
But there are still a number of spots left to be filled in the knockout stages. While some teams can still qualify as best third-placed teams, other teams still have a number of group stage games to be played.
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One of them is Real Salt Lake. In Group C, they’ve played two games, scored two goals, and kept a clean sheet in both games. in their final group game, they take on Sporting Kansas City, a side that has scored four times in their last two games.
Kansas will have to better their record of one win in the last five against Real Salt Lake to finish, at least, in second place. In the other group game, Colorado Rapids will seek to earn their first points of the tournament when they take on Minnesota United, currently in second place.
Colombus Crew, in Group E, finished the group stages as the best team. With seven goals scored, none conceded, they won nine points out of a possible nine. While they have secured qualification from the group, New York Red Bulls and FC Cincinnati, both with three points, will battle it out for the other qualification spot.
In their last four meetings, they have lost three times.
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In the last group, all four teams still have at least a game to play.
Los Angeles Galaxy, with zero points from two games, can no longer qualify. Despite the absence of their Mexican star, Los Angeles FC, on the other hand, have scored nine goals and are the top scorers in the tournament. In their final game against table-toppers, Portland Timbers, they will fight for a chance to finish top of the table.
All games are currently being played at a neutral location. So, there’s no home advantage. With all things being equal, which teams do you think will pick up the important points in the final games? Drop your comments below and share your thoughts with us.